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Hawaiian Wedding Cake starts with a simple cake mix. Add a splash of coconut and pineapple and it becomes a refreshing cake that tastes like a piña colada.
Hawaiian Wedding Cake
Hawaiian Wedding Cake is a basic cake mix cake with three layers on top: a crushed pineapple layer that seeps into the cake, a creamy pudding layer, and then whipped topping and coconut on top. What I like about the topping on this Hawaiian Wedding Cake is it is not too sweet. It is flavorful and light. It’s a nice change from heavy, sugary frosting. Another great thing about this cake, is it looks pretty in a simple cake pan. No need for layers of cake or specialty pans to make this cake stand out! It is simple and can still feed a crowd using a 9×13 cake pan.
Hawaiian Wedding Cake Recipe Tips
A couple of tips on making this Hawaiian Wedding Cake. First, when I use pudding and milk in a recipe, I always use 2% or whole milk (using skim milk or 1% milk will not thicken the pudding as well). Second, when using cream cheese in a recipe make sure it is softened. If the cream cheese is not completely softened it will leave clumps in the pudding mixture.
Leave your cream cheese on the counter to soften. Depending on the temperature in your house it can take 30 minutes to an hour. Press on the outside of the package to test if it is completely softened. Another way to soften the cream cheese is to take it out of the package, cut it in cubes, place it in a microwavable bowl and microwave for 20 seconds. Stir well. If it is not completely softened, cook for additional 10 second increments. The cream cheese should not become hot, just softened enough to blend well with the other ingredients. If I am preparing this cake in advance, I will hold off adding the whipped topping and coconut until just before it is served.
Gluten-Free Hawaiian Wedding Cake
Good news for those who are Gluten-Free! This Hawaiian Wedding Cake is easy to make gluten free. The only two suspect ingredients are the yellow cake mix and the vanilla pudding mix. Pillsbury and Betty Crocker both make a gluten-free yellow cake mix and they are available at pretty much every grocery store out there. If they aren’t in your local grocery store, you can also purchase them online.
As of this post, Kraft does not label its Jell-O instant pudding as gluten free. The product itself does not contain gluten as an ingredient, but Kraft does not guarantee that the product has not come in contact with gluten during manufacturing. If this is a concern, there are brands that carry gluten-free instant pudding mixes. Simply Delish and Better Bowls are two brands I have found that carry a gluten-free instant vanilla pudding mix. You can also make your own gluten-free instant pudding mixes. Try this recipe from is Gluten-Free to a Shoestring.
Looking for more tasty summer desserts like this Hawaiian Wedding Cake? Try these!
- Slow Cooker Peach Crisp: Want a warm dessert without having to heat up the house? This is the perfect solution. This peach crisp is SUPER easy to make and you don’t have to turn on a hot oven. Just throw it all in the crockpot and forget about it. Tastes best a la mode!
- Raspberry Almond Fudge Ice Cream Cake: What do you get when you combine fruit, chocolate, ice cream, and a touch of almond? Pretty much the most amazing Summer dessert ever. Everything that makes a delicious, refreshing Summer dessert all in one easy recipe.
- Pink Lemonade Ice Cream Pie: We had this ice cream pie all the time growing up. It is so easy to make and as kids, we LOVED it. We all loved pink lemonade when we were kids (still do) and this was just like Pink Lemonade but in ice cream form and served like pie. WIN. WIN. The sweet and tangy flavors taste just like Summertime – if Summertime had a taste.
- Orange Pineapple Cake: This is another favorite fruity cake but instead of the highlight being berries, this has a more citrus, island-y twist. This is a great one for any island-themed summer parties. So so easy to make and deliciously refreshing.
- Raspberry Lemon Cake: This cake is a little bit berry, a little bit citrus. Reminds me of a raspberry lemonade in cake form! Whenever we make this cake for potlucks it ALWAYS gets polished.
How to Make Hawaiian Wedding Cake
Hawaiian Wedding Cake
- 9×13 Baking Pan
- Hand Mixer
- Mixing Bowls
- Wooden Spoon
- 1 package yellow cake mix
- 15 ounces crushed pineapple not drained
- 8 ounces cream cheese softened
- 3 ounces instant vanilla pudding mix
- 2 cups milk 2% or whole
- 12 ounces whipped topping
- 1 cup sweetened coconut flakes
- Bake cake mix according to package directions in a 9×13 pan. Cool completely.
- While cake is baking, mix cream cheese, pudding and milk together in a mixer or with electric beaters until blended well and thickened. Place pudding mixture in refrigerator. It will continue to thicken until cake is cooled.
- When cake is cooled, poke holes evenly in the top of the cake with the round handle end of a wooden spoon.
- Spread crushed pineapple evenly over the cake.
- Add the pudding mixture.
- Spread whipped topping over the pudding mixture and sprinkle entire cake with coconut flakes.
- Serve immediately or keep covered and refrigerated until ready to serve.
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Can you make this cake the day before for a party or is it best to do it same day?
For best results, I would make the cake and the pudding mixture ahead of time, and then assemble it the day you want to serve it!
I am a diabetic. So I try to cut the carbs and sugar down. I use sugar free cool whip, sugar free vanilla pudding, 2% milk and a sugar free BettyCrocker yellow cake mix. I use coconut oil (which makes the taste that much better) instead of regular oil. You can buy sugar free crushed pineapple, but that would defeat my purpose to cheat! I personally love the taste and am keeping my sugar low. Sooo good!
Wow, that sounds great! So happy that you could make it your own and still enjoy this delicious cake! Thanks for sharing!
Loved all the recipes .So easy
Do you think I can freeze this cake?
I haven’t tried to freeze this cake so I’m not sure!
Re Hawaiian Wedding Cake:
Could I also add ginger root to this recipe? I have extra boiled ginger root that I think might add flavor to this cake. What do you think?
Sounds like it could be yummy! Let us know how it goes if you try it!
Is it better to use the crushed pineapple in heavy syrup or 100% juice?
Either way is fine! I like using the 100% juice kind because I think it tastes fresher.
This cake is a favorite with all my friends and family Everyone requests it wherever I go. I’ve been making this cake for about 15 years and always it gets Rave reviews! In my family we call it our Hawaiian Wiggle cake☺️🌺
I made this for my husbands birthday because he loves tropical flavors and everyone loved it. Will definitely make this again!
This cake looks delicious! I can’t wait to try it this weekend!
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